tv Washington Journal CSPAN May 23, 2012 7:00am-10:00am EDT
this hour, co-authors thomas mann and norm ornstein in worseir book, "it's even than it looks." national geographic contributor timothy paris on his article on the potential affect of solar storms on global power grids. today's news, calls, e-mails and ♪ host: secret service agents were removed. they plan to fight for their jobs. the director testifies that -- at 10:30 a.m. >> that live and listen to it on the radio. president obama will give a commencement address this
morning. in an analysis, the congressional budget office warns us of a recession due to tax hikes and spending cuts, which is referred to as a fiscal cliff. we are interested in your thoughts on what to be done about tax cuts and spending cuts in light of this potential economic downturn. you can reach out to us in one of many ways. 202-737-0002, republican. 202-737-0001, democrat. 202-628-0205. independ, indepen. @cspanwj for twitter and email us email@example.com. guest: here is a write up on the cbo --
host: he joins us on the phone to explain more. thank you for joining us. can we start with taking a look at specifically what tax increases in spending cuts are being referred to? guest: yes. it is called the fiscal cliff. the biggest thing is the bush era tax cuts coming from the 2001 and 2003 tax cut that george w. bush signed. they will expire. they were expended for two years. they will expire. that will be the bulk of it. we will see automatic spending cuts totaling $109 billion.
that was triggered by the debt ceiling deal in august. it was forged when the house refused to raise the nation's borrowing limit. one part was deficit caps, spending caps over 10 years in the second part was creating the super committee that was supposed to come up with 1.2 trillion dollars. in additional cuts. that failed last year. as a punishment, and the $109 billion cut was supposed to happen on january 2. those are the major ones. there are other things that are contributing to this. there is a payroll tax cut that is temporary. no one expects to extend past december. we have the doc fix -- congress
always extended that. if they fail to do it this time, that will contribute to the fiscal cliff. the basic idea is that with this sudden tax increases and spending cuts, the man to would suffer. -- demand would suffer. cbo speculate the severity of the downturn? guest: in the past, they said growth would be slow. 1.1% gdp growth over 2013 if the fiscal cliff was kept in place. now, it is is seeing smaller -- it is seeing smaller growth. pete is a contracting, negative growth of 1.3%. the definition of a recession is two quarters of economic growth. we would see that important barrier crossed into a recession
in early 2013. once that happens, it is actually -- it could be more problematic for the economy. host: what this information from the report mean for those of the hill? debating about spending cuts and tax hikes? guest: we saw a bunch of reactants, e-mail statements. iraq's statements. -- broadcasts statements. they show no sign of either side moving. it is important to remember that people do not strike deals until they really have to. that is what both sides are really looking to do right now. and why people say nothing will happen until the election because people do not know how many seats there will be in congress. there is little incentive to settle down and say i am going to play this hand. we saw people like chris van
hollen and harry reid of saying this cbo report shows we need to do what democrats have been saying, tax increases and spending cuts. on the republican side, we have talked about tax increases. eric cantor went on fox news yesterday saying, the election is about a choice. if you want taxes to go up, but for president obama. if you want them to go down, both for mitt romney. people are drawing lines in the sand. it is not like they had an epiphany and decided to come together. for people on wall street remained street, you know, you should be a bit if it nervous. -- a bit nervous.
people have told us that in the lame-duck session we are likely to see, we will seek temporary extensions of these things. we do not actually go over the cliff. and then some sort of mechanism which they have used in the past to schedule a way to deal with the longer-term issues. but the super committee failed. how -- host: the white house stated that congress should pass the presidents budget recommendation. what is it about that plan that would work in light of that report? guest: the president has come closer to a the bipartisan recommendation. his own deficit recommendation commission came out a report in
december. he came to embrace the idea of reforming the tax code, making it simpler. thbut, in doing that, president obama wants to raise revenue indicate that to paying down the deficit. republicans want to reform the tax code but they only want revenue to come from any sort of potential economic growth. they do not want to raise net revenue because most republicans have signed the no net revenue pledge. that is a crux of what is going on here. you know, ultimately, the size of the entitlements will be an issue a and republicans want to reform medicare in a very, very
it zients away. some say very radical and some say thoughtful. that is a long-term issue past the next 10 years because no one is talking about cutting current benefits. i think the tax issue is what matters in the 10-year budget window and what the lame duck will center on. host: that is a staff writer from the hill. you can find his blog on thehill.com. in light of the cbo warning of a recession, using the words fiscal cliff, we are following up. we want to get your thoughts from information that we just heard and thoughts about the nature of tax-spending cuts. the lights are on your screen if you want to weigh in on social media, you can do that, too. new york city. go ahead. caller: thank you for c-span.
only in america could you get -- convince four people and middle class people to become cheerleaders for tax breaks for the wealthy people. and for rich people. and for wealthy corporations that make billions of dollars like oil companies to get tax subsidies. it is mind-boggling. i am probably -- i am not to 1% - er. i know people who are one percenters. we are not drug creators. not anymore. those days are gone. what we are now is, just like everybody else, skeptical about the future in and we are hoarding and saving as much as weekend. this will business of trickle-
down is nonsense. host: when it comes to the idea of what might happen at the end of the year with the spending cuts and tax hikes, what should be done? caller: i am a businessman be. in order to be in business, you have to be able to pay your bills. you need revenue. there is no question about it. i cannot wait to contribute more. we need to go back. paul ryan is right. there really is a choice. host: solid city, utah. republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. this problem you have with the government spending too much of taxpayers' money is all because washington, d.c. is set up for that. the my opinion -- the first thing you need to do is move d.c. to denver, colorado and get it out here where people are farmers and know what the meaning of a dollar is and get
it away from all of the special interest groups. you people in d.c. take all of the taxpayers' money and spend it like a drunken sailor. that is the problem. the have congressman and senators and a they have been enriching themselves of the american people. if you said a bunch of people to an area and say here is money, go out and spend it and go make deals for yourself, the budget will keep going on and on. there are passing laws -- 365 days a year. we are sitting here trying to survive. you people are living off our money. host: a potential recession in 2013 depending on what happens at the end of this year. that is from the cbo report. the report is all mine if you want to read it. that is scheduled to occur in 2013. part of it says that taken together, cbo estimates policies
will reduce the federal budget deficit by $607 billion or 4.0% of gross domestic product -- host: jackson though, florida. independent line. caller: good morning. i am amazed at some of the things that gentleman from new york was talking about. the 1% people in depending on whose figures you use, 47% of americans pay no income tax at all. we will not go into that. it is very simple to take care of the situation. we have a dead% cut in federal spending. -- 10% cut in federal spending. we have to get people back to work, which would increase revenue coming in because people are paying taxes.
so, you know, it is not rocket science. if you put people to work, you'll have more income coming into the government. and, they need to -- there are always crying about social security growing broke. they need to reinstate the payroll tax deductions from social security to put it back to where the employee is paying the 6% or 6.2% that the employers pay. maybe social security will not go broke and they ought to think about raising the 1.2% that you pay for medicare. host: you are an independent. what is the story and this news made for those running for president? caller: well, over the last three years, the democrats have passed the budget. the president's budget that went to the senate which was controlled by congress or by the
democrats and voted his budget down 99 to 0. i really do not know what to tell you anymore. being nice, i will not say we have 435 idiots up there, but basically, the way the government is being run, you know, i do not see anything changing. we have too much partisan. nobody wants to compromise. nobody wants to do anything except, you know, a professed their ideologies. i do not know any more. we do not need to increase the deficit by one trillion dollars, which that will come up again before the end of the year. i have taken long enough. i could talk for hours. i appreciated. thank you. host: of tennessee -- this is the statement from harry reid.
he says -- other statements are being released from legislators in light of this report. tennessee. democrats' line. hello. caller: hello. i do not have a problem getting job creators tax cuts. as long as they are creating jobs in this country. key phrase. but, if they are not creating jobs in this country, i think there tax cut should be subject to being recalled by congress. but, as a result of social security growing row, i heard senator mccain say that something about the highway trust fund doesn't actually exist -- they are paying that money out of social security. now, maybe that is a little cruel as to why social security
is a -- a little q and as to why social security is so broke. host: maryland. republican line. caller: what we need to do is eliminate the bush tax sarah across the board for everybody. -- tax era across the board for everybody. we are in bad shape. let us eliminate the tax cuts for everybody. eliminate oil subsidies to the oil companies because they certainly do not need the money. they're making money hand over fist. eliminate aid to rich companies because is trial gets billions of dollars. they have national health care for all of us -- for all of their citizens. host: would you cut medicare and
medicaid, those kinds of things? caller: absolutely not. those are the very things that keep our elderly alive. you know, when there retiree and /or become ill. they are needed because the taxpayers need that. that is the social safety net that is necessary to keep these people alive. host: off of twitter -- host: we will continue in just a minute. a couple of stories internationally. this is from the egyptian and election.
host: other stories are playing out in the paper, as well. iowa. up next. potential recession in 2013. caller: hi, how're you doing? i would like to say that if my memory is correct, the republicans ran on the economy and jobs in 2010 and they voted against every one of obama's jobs bill. we know the state of the economy. also, i think what would help us to get this ball rolling is the democrats should agree to spending cuts and the republican should agree to pay off their debts for the 8 years that bush was in office.
this is part of what could happen at the end of the year if things are allowed to expire in spending cuts take place. we are getting your thoughts on the cbo's save money would be taking out of the economy and that could cause a recession. this is in atlanta, georgia. the democrats' line. hello. the caller: hello. i want to be able to make a comment and not be cut off so quickly. i want to make a comment. back in the 1950's an 1960's, 75% of the taxes thatape for the 1% and a 5% of millionaires because they were making good money, as they are now. before they be regulated all of these laws that reduced the taxes for the wealthy, does the money that was being collected
back then -- it was paying for roads and public hospitals, schools. there was a big boom in business and school and commerce. everything was going great. until the late 1970's and the early 1980's when reagan got in and then they started deregulating all of these laws that allowed the crooked rich to get in and start finding ways to gain more money and take away regulation where they had the freedom to do whatever when it comes to corporate greed and making more money. host: what does this mean for the current figures from the cbo? caller: it is the same thing
that is going on. you have the corporate greediness in congress that is fighting the president and try to regain power and control. they are trying to keep the american public figure into -- ignorant to the wealth they have been getting off the backs of the taxpayers. they are beginning -- blaming the deficit on the poor and the middle class and they want to convince the public that is their fault. a criminal has gotten into congress and that there are convincing people in blue collarville that the problem is caused by the poor and minorities. happening.ot what is
american people did not have any jobs because the corporations have taken our jobs overseas and to have manufactured all of these products so they can sell it back to us at 5% -- 200% of what it costs to make. they get away with not paying any taxes. host: thank you. clinton, south carolina. republican line. caller: three years ago, the democrats told us that all of the fight it to collapse as was the republicans' fault. act orthey created a bod whatever -- acting as if this would reregulate -the industry. and we got the jpmorgan debacle
last week. they did not fix the problem. democrats are not able to fix it, either. it was not purely republican problem. here, you have the opportunity to fix the problem. they said they did. we get another loss and obama once to push it off onto somebody else. if 20 people were deserted on an island tomorrow, if you will be created and will be initiative and take initiatives and create jobs, businesses. they will give jobs out. it is trickle down. whether we like it or not. things do trickle-down. innovation trickles down. it is not done by a massive collection of government who sits there like the soviet union and china and creates an upward momentum. it does that work that way. host: with what is being faced as far as potential cuts and hikes in taxes, which should be
done between now and the end of the year? caller: i am glad the bush tax cuts are going away. the only problem is, when new revenue comes in, the democrats ought to spend, spend, spend. we see that on the c-span. they want to spend money in california for illegal immigrants. we wish we had the money to help them with their issues that just got past, but we do not have the money. the democrats want to keep spending and creating new bills all the time and then saying, because we do not have money and the republicans are against it -- it is a terrible track. people say the republicans are the ones they're raised the banter. i think we need to pay more. when 50% of the people are not willing to pay more, and they could afford to come 8 makes it difficult and frustrating
you are next. james, independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. the american people are not realizing that we are their bosses. we are their employees. just because somebody got a bridge to nowhere or a grant for a college or some institution in their area, what they ought to do is both those people out and put people to work. if they do not work, get them out the next time.
stop this high pension that they get. if they only serve one term, they do not get a pension. that is the way i feel. host: phil -- philadelphia, pennsylvania. this is jim. good morning. caller: good morning, c-span. i have a few comments from abraham lincoln. you cannot fool all the people of the time. barack obama and the democrats are trying to prove him wrong on that. he said -- you cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. you cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. you cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. you cannot lift the wage earner up by paying -- pulling down the wage payer. you cannot build character by taking away people's initiative to independence. host: what do these mean about
the cbo budget? [laughter] caller: you cannot incite class hatred. the last thing he said was, you cannot hold people permanently by doing for them what they could introduce for themselves. the cbo budget -- the cbo has it right. the democrats have it wrong. but this guy back in the white house for another four years and we have to be crazy. thank you, c-span. host: head of the secret service shows up before congress today at 10:30 a.m. this will be a hearing on the misconduct you have heard about in the papers by secret service agents and whether the warning signals existed before hand. he has been called to provide details in the scandal. that resulted in the this of -- dismissal of nine employees.
four of them are looking to get their jobs back. the director has never spoken publicly since it took place last month. he will appear lives before the senate today. you can watch said on c-span starting at 10:30 a.m. listen to it on c-span radio, as well. or again. good morning. ted, democrats' line. caller: it is kind of a shock to wake up and see the congressional budget office saying that we are of the cliff again. i am just wondering, forget about dodd-frank and the volcker rule. let us go back to the trigger that started this -- the repeal of glass-steagall. let us put that back into place. what host: that do? caller: it kept the belly robbers that baby. -- at bay. how about going after the deadbeats that do not pay their
tax bills? i am not talking about the republicans song that only 47% do not pay taxes or whatever. i have been paying every year since 1973. i do not know. you know, i find all of this shocking. i find it appalling. i do what i am supposed to do. what about the mushheads in the house of representatives? host: off of facebook -- caller: host: hunts phil -- host: hunt's though, alabama. good morning. caller: thank you c-span. regarding this budget, i am very tired of hearing the back and forth as to why it this budget
cannot be put under control. if you put single women in office who have ran the household, they could get this budget balanced. i have done it for 25 years. i raised my children off of one income. i paid taxes and did what i had to do. the primary concern for american people need to be concerned -- i hope you listen carefully. a flat tax would be fair for everybody. pay one flat tax. pay your fair share. 10%, 20%. we need to get under control who is spending all of this money and where it is going. please do summary church on what one trillion dollars is. -- please do some research on what $one trillion is. give the money back to the american people.
$4 trillion could put a lot of money in people's pockets. you could end the government programs. give me my money and i could make it work for myself. obviously, we are handing money to people who do not know how to handle money. that makes all of us in st.. it needs to stop. put single women over this country into we could get this thing handled. it is obvious that people are confused and we are handing the money and the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing in expecting different results. host: from campaign 2012 news in the "washington post" -- he writes that mitt romney is
outlining his proposal and dry in contrast with president obama on issues from education and health care -- host: the president and mitt romney won in arkansas it yesterday -- arkansas and kentucky yesterday. this is the arkansas paper. there is a side bar story. their lead story, actually. barack obama won the primary tuesday --
host: the campaign of mr. rahm me -- host: wisconsin. good morning. thank you for holding on. caller: this whole budget thing and everything else could be solved tin short order. spend only what you have coming in. then, you know, a is kind of too bad if you do not have the money for the people who say they cannot find jobs and this or that. we are in a society now that is nothing but greedy and what did you give to me?
i will take care of it. that does not work. if you make it on your of, you appreciate it more. our government handouts to the lazy do not wear. that is the brutal truth that comes to it. host: you heard the story about governor romney making policy pieces -- speeches. what is occurring today. that will be -- learn more about it on our webiste and find out more about the event. good morning. ohio. caller: good morning. this president did not make this mess. bush was left with a lot of money in the. we were going in the right
direction. we tried to impeach that man -- we have two or send nobody is paying for it. he just added to the debt. the now, -- now, this is the first time in history that a president has not finished a cabinet. he has been in office 3.5 years and he still does not have a cabinet. they will tell them stood a and no, no, no. when you go to a party and you have a person to dance with, but you do not have a partner that will dance with you because you did not bring nothing to the table, you cannot hold another person responsible for your foolishness. watch it.
put those republican people back in. host: what decisions does the president have to make? caller: he needs to go back to glass-steagall. he needs to hurry up and you need to hurry up and stop this mess. if they want to shut it down and let american -- the american people are foolish enough to see everybody looking at us and laughing their heads off. it will be the death of the united states of america. nobody will loan you any money. host: from "the washington post" --
cut me off because of the way i talk. i believe that we need to free markets and liberties back. i also believe that you cannot spend $11 billion per day and only taken $7 billion per day. i think that they should set of a budget and abolish a lot of things like the fed, that turns money and then devalued the dollar. anything you buy at the store all goes up because of that. host: what you think about the tax hikes of no decision is made by the end of the year? caller: i think that the problem is compromise. would you cover runs -- when you
compromise, you give up what you believe in. the problem is, people think there is a difference between the democrats and republicans. they only have one vision to support regulations. big banking. business is not working. they should abolish the said. abolish the income tax. and these words. brings our -- bring our troops home. save money. host: the ambassador to afghanistan reports this morning that he plans to leave his post, citing health reasons. the last paragraph of the right of talks about who might take his place.
host: 1 merkel on this topic. cdo wards of the u.s. falling -- one more call on this topic. the cbo warns of the u.s. falling off the fiscal cliff. this is lawrenceville, georgia. republican line. go ahead. caller: do not think the american people are listening. the middle class will get a 5% hike in their taxes in 2013. that means for a person like me, that is $4,000. obama promised he would not raise taxes on anybody making less than $250,000. i do not make anywhere near that. my taxes will go up 5%. you know, democrats keep saying that republicans want to take everybody back to the 50's.
if you look are on the country, all of the states that are republican are paying off their bills. the only states that not paid off their bills are the democrats states. i think the republicans are going the right way. i say we get rid of obama and get somebody in there that can create jobs. host: democrats and republicans are working with each other in the politics -- the topic of our next discussions with two gentlemen who wrote a book on that topic taking a look at how they work with each other. thomas mannan and norman ornstein = = co-authors of "it's even worse than it looks"."
or even the mayor of new york city. the guy sitting to your right could be a future nobel laureate. ok, maybe not him. certainly the one to your left. >> memorial day weekend, watch commencement speeches. saturday through tuesday at noon and 10:00 p.m. eastern. >> i think this is one of those markets that i think people vote for it the -- do not vote for the party. the city of wichita votes for the candidates. i think you are seeing more of that in the recent years here in the midwest. there really voting more for what the person stands for. >> june 2 and third, we explore the heritage and literary
culture a wichita, kan.. >> the first place at want to show you is this only remaining original structure from the 1865 to 1870 time. it was a very important building in our history in that it is a residence, but it is also the headquarters of the will to cut out and land company. they came down here to create the city of wichita. >> watch for "book tv" in wichita on june 2 and third on c-span2 and 3. >> "washington journal" continues. >host: joining us now -- "it's even worse than it looks: how the american constitutional system collided with the new politics of extremism." the authors, norman ornstein and thomas mann.
gentlemen, thank you for joining us. if it is even worse, what exactly is worse? [laughter] guest: we are in a situation in which we have a fundamental mismatch between our political parties, which have become intensely polarized, and operate much like parties in a parliamentary system. vehemently oppositional. no collaboration. drive . -- drawing the line. they're operating in a power system, in which our founders anticipated collaboration, negotiation, compromise. the two coming together produce governmental this function across the board. host: the opening chapters with a look at the debates over the
debt ceiling. what has changed in that process? guest: we did a presentation anked eek in which i th richard murdock for compromising. now, we're seeing it again in the most destructive way. it shows that we have our title -- the system always looks rambunctious. that is how it is set up. now, we have something that is different because you cannot solve basic problems by compromise. the second part of it is is that we have been immersed in politics from that end of capitol hill to the other end of pennsylvania avenue for 42 years and we have not seen it that bad. we have seen debt ceiling disputes -- more than 80 votes since the 1960's. some of them were politically
ridiculous. everybody was pestering and playing games and flipping sides. everybody knew in the end that they would have the votes to make sure the full faith in the u.s. was not challenged. it is a regular hostage-taking mechanism. at the time of a weak economy, that is unacceptable. host: is this because of the influence of the republicans, those who are supported by tea party principles? guest: have certainly reinforced and exacerbated the position and strategy of the republicans. one of the rather controversial conclusions of our book is that the polarization between the parties is not symmetrical. one of our political parties, namely the republican party, has your doff of the track. not just in its ideological policy ambitions, which is to reconsider 100 years of policy,
but in terms of process. of being willing to engage in a permanent campaign every hour, every day, on every issue. even if that means in the midst of an economic crisis, having a strategy of unified opposition and to whatever a democratic president proposes and dead and willingness, even if he offers proposals they have embraced themselves only a few years ago, to discuss any of that. it is my way, you do what we say or we will defeat you. host: what role the democrats play in this process? guest: it would be unfair to play the tea party for all of this. you have a lot of people who came in 2010 under that guide. you have many more members,
senior members did leaders, led the way our best. republican study committee back in 1973, the first half director had been a colleague of ours. it was a small fringe group. the right-wing caucus of the republicans. 80% of the members. we know from another book on the tea party group said it was a group of leaders and senior members who gathered on the inauguration evening for barack obama at the capital grille to come up with a strategy of voting against everything he was for because he was for it. turning to the democrats, they are no angels. we're not suggesting that you have a good party and a bad party. democrats have, in the past, them plenty of things that proposition know, like the parliamentary party, or that were designed more to stop on the neck of a republican president would he was down. we believe democrats have
generally stayed within the boundaries of what has been our normal rambo of his politics. this is different. when george w. bush was president, he came in under the worser of stages imaginable for a president. a week after the most contentious election in, democrats could devoted and destroy him. liberal democrats gave him a huge victory with no trial left behind. it is made the policies that they were comfortable with, but the stimulus package at 40% of it in tax cuts. there were things that would have made the republicans comfortable. democrats were willing to give him a victory. a boost at the beginning. because, they were willing to cut deals. not, it is difficult. host: if you want to ask these gentlemen questions about their books or philosophies, the numbers are on your screen. democrats, 202-737-0001.
republicans, 202-737-0002. independents, 202-628-0205. join us off of twitter @cspanwj and send us an email, firstname.lastname@example.org. our first call is from illinois. this is on our democrats' line. good morning. steve? steve. my na ime is i am upset with barney frank for allowing the housing bubble to happen. i am upset with obama as cabinet members, the stimulus package. p &g genergy --
energy it -- grading 700 jobs between ohio and arizona. 1600 jobs go to malaysia. it is frustrating the way that these cabinets boards, the department of energy, gsa, and nd our these people spe tax dollars with no concern about the american people. host: you're breaking up. has the discussion changed about working together because of the focus on spending issues? guest: listen, we are in a situation now where republicans are insisting that the huge deficits that we face are
because of this ramp up in spending by the obama administration. they believe immediate cuts in discretionary programs will help the economy. democrats are saying that that is insane. what we need is a balanced package of spending in the short term to bolster demand to give the economy growing, we still have high levels of unemployment. at the same time, putting in place cuts over the intermediate, long term, which means dealing with our health care costs, in setting in motion policies to increase revenues. 15% of gdp -- traditionally, they are 20% of gdp. the aging of the population, they will have to go 22% or 23%.
the stimulus that president obama put in place may come as the caller suggests, not in every case, operate in the way he would have liked, but the consensus from cbo and every economic forecaster is that it is helped. it was high enough, but compared to europe, our growth rate looks pretty good. host: the cbo says if we let tax cuts expire and spending cuts happen, we will have a recession in 2013. the nature of ideas to spend and tax, now we see potential results. that is why republicans are reacting that way. host: that is what alarms us. -- guest: that is what alarms us. we not only have problems in the short and long term, but if you think about that moment in december at the end of december, all the bush tax cuts expired. the deal we have with the payroll tax cut, the fixed
before medicare, the extension of unemployment benefits expires. we will have a potential government shut down because we will not have resolved the appropriations for the year that begins october 1 because house republicans have decided to drop a very delicate deal that is a lot, not just in a budget read to listen. they reached it with a less debt limit debacle. we may have the debt limit to reached again. we talked about that earlier with john boehner saying we will bring it down unless we get to everyone. we have in the short term, if all of that happens, it is disastrous. in the long run if you did revenue to solve the budget problem but you might not be alive. that is our problem. another part of the problem, which is reflected in what tom
was saying is a misunderstanding of the stimulus. if we did not have a typical recession where you rebound quickly. we are doing better than other countries. without the stimulus, we would be close to a depression. millions of jobs and economic growth was created, but people do not see it and there is understandable unhappiness with government. >> texas. joe. independent line. caller: i have one comment and one question. during the bush administration, but that was doubled. during the obama administration, it is half as much. my question is why do you not
have some programs that could speak about one of the biggest problems with the budget, the military-related budget, which is a little over $1 trillion. they always have a voice votes. they never have a debate. please ask someone to speak in terms of the tremendous military budget including over 700 bases overseas. host: mr. ornstein? guest: share. what has gotten us into the mess that we are in now where we move from a projected $5.6 trillion in surplus is to huge debt was the tax cuts in 2001, and 2003,
were the biggest cause, and the wars, right behind. the stimulus was temporary and has begun to fade out of long- term projections from those costs. that gets back to the point that tom made on the need for revenue. on defense, joe has a point, and it is why half of the sequesters hit the fence pretty hard. the reason we will have a confrontation over appropriations in october, and probably until december is that even though there was agreement on this deal, half coming from discretionary spending and half from defense, republicans now say we will protect every dime of defense, as that is what is in the right and budget, and then we will take that additional amount in more of a discretionary domestic spending.
every group from bowles-simpson, to the gang of six, has said we are not going to solve the debt problem, as we do something about defense, government spending in general, and programs like social security, medicare, and medicaid, and revenues. if you did not put those on the table, there will not be a bargain. host: our guests are the co- authors of "it's even worse than it looks -- how the american constitutional system collided with the new politics of extremism." pittsburgh, pennsylvania. caller: both sides of the fence are played against each other. the last two weeks is like a comedy show. this guy got the money from facebook and is leaving the country. they have been attacking rich people for four years.
now they are leaving the country and they are crying about it? then i watched joe biden. this guy is worth over $5 billion -- $5 million. he gets a pension, a salary, when i watch this, republican or democrat -- i used to be a democrat -- this has turned into a joke. bush raised taxes. he called bush on patriotic? using that system, obama would be treated like bennett did arnold. this is interesting. thank you for hearing me out. new guest: harry has strong views, but at times they do not relate to the facts.
obama has cut taxes. he has not raised taxes. we would probably be better off in a long run if we put in place some tax increases. all obama has proposed to do is allow the bush tax cuts to expire for households earning more than $250,000. we will have to raise a lot more revenue than that if we are going to balance our budget. there is a lot of rhetoric on both sides, but here is the reality. to the extent that we have had economic growth in recent years, the benefits have overwhelmingly gone to the top 1% of households in america. 93% of the benefits in joined by 1%. that does not mean you have to be against rich people, but it
is not on reasonable to make sure they pay their fair share of taxes and when someone is willing to give up citizenship so they do not have to pay capital gains taxes on a windfall from an early investment, that sends the wrong signal. host: how much of this is related to procedure on the house and the senate, related to the filibuster rule? guest: the filibuster has been central to the republican strategy. during the first two years of the obama administration were democrats controlled the house and senate, the obstacle was the filibuster. it has gone from seldom-used, to absolutely routine, normal
requirement of a 60-vote threshold. the framers never had that in mind but it is a new reality. when you have a parliamentary- like opposition, they are willing to use it on everything. only when you have a majority 60 votes can you get anything done. host: on the house side house speaker john boehner working with various factions with house republicans. guest: the speaker has a tough job. as he said, he has to keep 218 frogs in the oil barrel. it used to be herding cats. i'm not sure what comes next. is it tough job. he is not able to do it with a unified theme behind him.
we know that when they agreed on the budget hand and eric cantor were at odds. having said that, he is becoming proactive with his new threat on the debt limit, and that suggests a new and troubling phase. let me add that in the senate there are occasional positive signs, green shoots, we could say, and we have seen it with a few nominations. we have two nominees with the federal reserve that had been pending for a long time, finally approved. we had an appeals judge threw without even a filibuster. we are seeing agreement on things like and fda bill to expedite drug approvals. here and there you find something. it is a delicate place, the senate -- you are trying to find
ways to work together, and now with the underlying strategy by mitch mcconnell to not have our fingerprints on anything significant because president obama might get credit for it, but where you have a lot of other members that want to solve problems and a beard off a dangerously with the filiform -- deere off a dangerously with the filibuster. host: washington, d.c., john. democrat line. caller: i make about $30,000 a year, and i do not have any problem paying more in taxes, but i want to say the bush tax cuts, it was the first time in american history we had two wars going on and we had tax cuts. the republicans can talk and talk, but there is absolutely 0%
that you can balance a budget and cut taxes, and history has shown that. for republicans have kept saying they want to cut taxes, but someone has to pay for these wars. it is $9 billion a month on afghanistan. it was billions and billions on the iraq war. i would just like -- i do not think the press does a good job of suppressing the republicans and saying "how are we specifically going to fight these two wars, cut taxes, and balance the budget caller: -- the budget?" guest: john is right. we engage in two decade-long
wars, and very costly, without engaging -- asking the american people to contribute. we told them to go shopping instead of raising taxes to pay for this. no obstacles to solving our immediate long term problems is greater than the grover norquist taxpayer pledge, with virtually every republican official in the house and senate committed to an ever increasing taxes, and defect to cut taxes, we will not -- and in fact to cut taxes, we will never solve our problem. john, let the president, and every commission has said, it has to be a balanced package. if you have to increase revenue and cut spending over time, and that includes major health
programs like medicare and medicaid. guest: john mentioned that he makes $30,000 and he would be happy to pay more. president obama made a mistake by not calling for pledges from everyone, and by pledging he would not touch the tax cuts, it is the fact that 1% have made enormous amounts. the obtuseness of people at that level sometimes -- we know steve schwarzman, who headed up a major investment firm, when talking about raising his tax rate from 15% to what others pay likened it to hitler in invading poland, but it is not met -- it is not possible to solve this problem on the back of millionaires and billionaires. everyone will have to pull
weight and it was a mistake not to make that call for sacrifice early on. if that had happened, some of what harry was saying about the rich and the rest of the country might have less of an edge to it. host: silver spring, maryland. john. independent line. caller: when president obama was elected president -- he is a very strong man, and that is why people admired him, but he came in nine huge expectations that he had helped to ramp up. the first thing he went to his health care. this is coming from the standpoint of someone that is not an expert in politics, but it seems that if you look at how things went in that health-care reform law, president obama came in with these expectations and had to get something done.
he and the democratic majority that he had strong-armed their way through the health-care reform law and that made republicans feel like they were being walked all over. if that is one of the sources of all of this vitriol. the republicans felt like they had no say and things were done. guest: if we go back and look at what actually happened in the health-care debate, a couple of things stand out. instead of ramming this through in the first few months of the obama administration everyone basically treaded water while a group, another gang of six in the senate led by max baucus, a democrat, and chuck grassley, a republican, including two other republicans, worked for seven or eight months to pull together a consensus bill.
fairly early on in the process, republican leadership said if a compromise was reached that was not accepted by 70% or more of the republicans in the senate that would be the end of their careers. what would be acceptable at that point was total capitulation. the ideas that they were debating where republican ideas. this bill is basically the republican alternative to from 1993 -- alternative from 1993 to the clinton health plan which was written in part by chuck grassley and orrin hatch to embraced the idea of a mandate and exchanges. he did not have a public option. then you throw in elements of
the mitt romney plan and you have what is in the affordable care act. i think it is a mistake to believe this was rammed through without any attempt to get republicans horse it involves some kind of socialist plan. if that is the case, chuck grassley and orrin hatch were closet socialist. guest: the first thing obama turned to was the economic recovery plan. the focus was on avoiding a financial meltdown and getting the economy growing once again. so, it was the stimulus bill. through the efforts of the department of treasury to keep credit from freezing up and allowing the economy to move. host: you mentioned orrin hatch. there is a piece in "the new york times co-call looking at his reelection campaign -- times
looking at the reelection campaign. guest: he is trying to get to the right of candidates where it is almost impossible to do so. when orrin hatch came to the senate he was, and is a strong conservative, but he also became a problem solver and would never fail to talk about the relationship he had with. kennedy and the bills they worked on including -- ted kennedy and the bills they worked on including child health. he does not talk about that anymore because he remembers what happens -- what happened to his colleague bob bennett.
orrin hatch collaborated -- bob bennett voted for the bush- driven plan tarp and voted with house democrats. dick luger is often called a moderate. he is a conservative. he has not move. the republican party has shifted host: minneapolis, -- shifted. host: minneapolis, minnesota. caller: good morning. private business cannot compete with government on a wages and benefits and the debt went to high because of that. my solution is to let the bush tax cuts expire for everyone. i agreed with the auto bailout. you guys are so partisan we will
never get this done, and i think you are full of baloney. guest: i am not sure where to take that, but i will say that if you look at what has happened with job growth over the last two and half years, it has been sluggish, but private-sector job growth has been relatively robust, especially coming out of a recession caused by enormous amounts of debt. the problem which job growth has been in the public sector. while the stimulus provided a lot of money to state and local governments, they had to go against the cycle of economics and slash their budgets. so, we kept teachers, firefighters, police officers in the work force, but there has been a hemorrhaging of public sector jobs and has been a problem for us.
it might get worse because one of the things being talked about, particularly in mitt romney's tax planning, is cutting tax rates. with unspecified plugging of the loopholes, he did say to a private group is he would eliminate the deduction for state and local taxes, so state and local governments would get another big blow down the road. host: greenville, mississippi. robert. democrat line. caller: good morning. in a nutshell, i can tell you how to balance the budget, are you ready? guest: ready. guest: ready. caller: we need to pull troops out of iraq, so we can stop spending billions of dollars, then we can start taxing the rich, people that make $1
million a year, and i guarantee you our budget will balance its software finally. there we go. -- will balance itself. there we go. amen. host: how do you know for sure? caller: a couple trillion dollars -- 15 years, right there. guest: i wish it were so, robert, but in effect budget projections over time, which have deficits and debt and increasing build in having our troops out of iraq and death in a stand. yes, it is -- afghanistan.
yes, it is a help, but we have assumed it. it has happened in iraq already. the gain from that is not insignificant, but it is a fraction of the deficit, and frankly there just are not enough rich people to garner enough new revenues. we get some from them, but it will take a lot more. remember, one of all previous callers on the republican line, richard, said we ought to let the bush tax cuts expire across the board. that would give us the clinton tax rates, and it is worth pointing out the economy grew at a healthy pace under those tax rates. so, while it would be a mistake to do it immediately, given the sluggish economic recovery, working toward that end is one
of the things that will be required to balance the budget. host: for minors, massachusetts. independent line. -- fort myers, massachusetts. independent line. caller: people often say the country needs for people in washington to stop fighting and we need more bipartisanship. i do not agree. two sets of parties with bad ideas -- the results of that is not a good policy. people keep talking about taxes , and doing this and? , i think we need to stop -- doing this and that, but i think we need to stop government spending overseas and in this country. i also believe we spend $11 billion a day. we should abolish a lot of things to stop spending so much money, and also reform our
taxes. it is not just taxes and it is not just spending. guest: certainly, what we know from almost every group that has looked at this is we have to restrain the growth of spending in almost every area. jake talk about two parties with bad ideas resulting in a bad policy. there is good by partisanship and bad bipartisanship. collaboration that tries to looking a clear-did headed way, and where the money is, what problems there are, and how you can solve them, which is what we had with the bowles-simpson commission, at and a group that did the same thing, and had more innovation, and inside with the gang of six, three conservative republicans, two
moderate and one liberal democrat, they all came up with a set of balanced ideas that almost any rational group looking at the realities of where spending is -- spending on things like diplomacy or foreign aid is less than 1% of the budget. we will not do it without ravenous. the problem is what happens once we get into the texas -- toxic environment. host: republican line. kansas. phil. caller: when i hear from washington that it is the other guy that is not reasonable when they have these debates, i do not know where the reason lies, but that is generally what i
hear. i understand there are polar extremes, but it seems any time something happens in washington, it is the other guy's fault. i did not know how we solve it. and what i see, and maybe i am not reasonable, but i see deficit mounting up, and i hear talk about stopping the rate of increase, in other words, keep increasing spending, but lower the rate. i am a citizen, but as i see it the bigger government gets the smaller i get, and that is where i see this heading. i suppose i am not reasonable. it seems the only alternative being offered is the idea we have one party rule, and it will take all of the unreasonableness
out of the debate. guest: i understand the frustration with the debate, but i would urge him to think back to 2001, when we had budget surpluses and the chairman of the federal reserve alan greenspan was worried that we paid down our entire national debt and have to buy interests in private enterprise and that would be a terrible thing. it was the result of policies, tax cuts, wars that were not paid for, and economic collapse in which deficits and debt automatically increased because of the fall off in economic activity on which taxes are paid. that is the underlying reality. there is no growth of government right now except defect result
from health-care -- except that result from health-care cost increases. if you want to deal with deficits and debt we need to get taxes to a level that we are prospered with for a long time in need to figure out a way to slow the growth of health care. the rest of government is not growing. host: you have highlighted problems and offer solutions. one of them is expanding the electorate. how'd you do that and what is the point? guest: we are worried we have politics driven by extreme bases. political consultants make money trying to incite their own party's base or scare them to death and suppress the other side. what we want to do is change the dialogue and create more of a
wait for those in the middle. our preference would be the australian system of mandatory attendance in the polls. in australia do not have to vote, but if you do not show up your subject to a fine of roughly $15, which you could get out of by writing a letter, just as here in the district of columbia has provided an enormous incentive -- a 5 cent tax on the bags has provided an enormous incentive for people to walk out of stores balancing cans. here is the difference. it is not just the people turned out but australian politicians tell you they do not cater to the bases. the voters are in the middle.
they do not focus on issues like gays and guns. they look at the economy, jobs, bigger things like education. they do not use inflammatory language. now, this is a tough sell. we do not like mandatory things. the alternative is a mega- lottery, do a mega-millions where your ticket is your vote stub, and given when we have people waiting in lines for two nights for a ticket, that might get a turnout up enough to change the dialogue. host: you also turn your attention to campaign finance reform. guest: the system of money in politics has exploded. we are back to the wild west, on the heels of the citizens united decision and a subsequent d.c.
circuit court decision and actions by the sec, it is possible for any individual, corporation, or union to take out of their pockets and the amount of money. it could be $1 million, $10 million, $50 million, give it to a so-called super pacs, they could have an affiliated non- profit 501c4, which keeps them from disclosing the donor and intervene in campaigns, spending billions of dollars. we need to improve the transparency of these contributions. we need to ensure there is jen independence between the so- called super pacs and the candidates they are trying to help, and we need to create
incentives for more or get -- ordinary folks to make small donations to balance these mega donations. host: i want both of you to briefly respond to this. in your book you say a "we have been struck by the failure of the media including editors, an guest: what we say is the media obsession with balance, reporting both sides of the story as equivalent is not what we are looking for. balanced treatment of an on balanced phenomenon does not give you the truth. journalists are supposed to give you an unvarnished portrait of what is going on. it is the same as saying we will report both sides, the holocaust denier and a holocaust victim are equal.
that is what has happened with our politics. the message there has gone out to voters is everyone is to blame. it is no wonder the approval rate of congress is 9% or thereabouts. it does not give people a sense of which party is the out lawyer with a sense of and need to rein them in, and we have had a media culpable in this because it is the easiest path and they have a value that does not focus on reporting where one side is more to blame than others. guest: i think that is exactly right. we have enormous respect for serious journalists, and a lot of people are trying to do the best job they can but it becomes very difficult if your main objective is to avoid being charged with partisan bias. there are groups out there watching every move and they
will jump on you. the effect is to not get the underlying reality to the citizens who are the only ones to can discipline behavior that has proven to be -- ones who can discipline behavior that has proven to be destruction which destructive. -- destructive. host: these are principles laid out in their box, "it's even worse than it looks -- how the american constitutional system collided with the new politics of extremism." thomas mann in norman ornstein are joining us. california. caller: good morning, c-span. i totally agree with the gentleman you have on. when i have found is that people are too busy going about their daily lives. they become frustrated and
disheartened with politics in general. so, until november comes around, and then they listen to the talking points of the parties and decide to base their decisions based on talking points rather than facts. guest: i think helen is absolutely right. people are busy. these are tough times. holding onto a job, earning a decent living, taking care of families, being engaged in community activities -- most people do not read all of those newspapers you have on your desk, so they pick up bits and pieces. frankly, the bits and pieces they picked up our share spain, and all of our jobs and what we
do -- our -- are pure spin. what we do at all these think tanks and as journalists is to try to help people understand what the problems are. the more we keep doing when we are doing the more we disarm and demobilize the public and ensure the current system channels system will stay as it is. host: someone draws on your ana guest: we point out we are not a parliamentary system and do not have a parliamentary culture. in a parliamentary system, it is accepted the majority acts and the actions are legitimate. here, if a majority acts, half of the system says it is not legitimate.
there, you have an election where it is clear where the accountability lies. here because you have different elections at different levels and you are voting at different offices at different times it is much harder to develop that sense of accountability. i should add, getting to the point that helen was making, it is not just talking points. in the post-citizens united world that anthony kennedy has given us we will have a huge flood of money coming in from outside groups that do not have a disclaimer bets that says i do not -- that i stand by this message, it will say i do not have any affiliation. it will only serve to enrage voters more and take us further away from solving problems. host: hartford, connecticut.
independent line. fred. caller: we find the semantics of those in d.c. astounding. tax cuts is the same thing as not allowing texas to increase h -- increase. the fellow that left the country to avoid taxes, i think he took care of his fiscal responsibilities before he left. that is no different from moving from one state to the next to avoid income tax. the filibuster -- you might be careful what you wish for. republicans took control of both houses, where would you be? if i am willing to say that president george w. bush was despicable in putting us into war and for the fiscal irresponsibility his administration demonstrated, i
would venture a guess that your guests would not admit that obama behavior by sending troops into other countries and the fiscal irresponsibility of his administration is also despicable. guest: fred is making assumptions about costs that are simply on not -- simply not accurate. our judgments on filibuster reform apply to both parties, whichever seems to be in the majority. we do not do away with it, but we put the burden on those that insist on denying the ability to bring a nomination or a piece of legislation to the floor and kill it. some safety valve for major issues ought to be retained in the senate, a the government and are the beneficiaries -- and if
republicans control the government and are the beneficiaries of the reformed filibuster, that is fine. i think the system will be working better. as far as euphemisms that exist, we do say, the rate of increased because increases have been in budgets as the population grows, as inflation wraps up additional -- racks up additional costs. that is a reality. therefore, if our concern is with our overall budget stability and viability that is precisely the way one should talk about it. host: this might seem rhetorical -- guest: it depends on not one which side has a president, but what happens inside congress. we might get something akin to a parliamentary model if we get a
romney presidency and republican majorities in both houses, but they would be extraordinarily narrow margins. there, a few rules towards implementing dramatic policy changes -- if you rule towards implementing dramatic policy changes, we will have the same deeper divisions and no opportunity to get out of it. it would be interesting to see what would happen with a mitt romney in a divided government situation. whether he would find many occasions where he might have more sympathy on the democratic side for some of the things he wanted to do that on the republican side, but i suspect given the campaign that romney has run where now he has a position on immigration that is the same as arizona where his position on climate change is nowhere near where, say, john mccain was four years ago, that
he would be pushed even further to the right and probably away from bipartisanship if he were present. guest: if there might be one area in which gridlocked disappears, and that could be a mega-reconciliation bill, the provision under the budget law that allows a simple majority in the senate to approve such a mega-bill, and yet it could be a host of tax cuts, and changes -- and in it could be a host of tax cuts, changes in medicare, medicaid -- a range of things. that is the pledge. that is part of the paul ryan budget. the public might be prepared for that. they might yearn for gridlock if they do not like what is included. host: joe from twitter suggests
-- asks what do you suggest we do and i will let you think about that as we take the last call. larry. go ahead. caller: the problem in washington is people are too hard-headed. they will not admit they had a bad idea. they do not want to be accused of flip flopping. but government-mandated health care system. everyone says that is a bad idea. drop it. do not go there. nobody wants it. host: with that in mind, final thoughts, mr. lowenstein? -- mr. ornstein? guest: this is basically a sign that if you did -- if you did not get health insurance. we have a study in massachusetts, where there romney plan that initially hemorrhaged a lot of money because it did not include cost
controls, the sharply increased their controls and 2% of the population is not injured and there is widespread satisfaction. i am now -- not insured, and there is widespread satisfaction. host: suggestions for going forward? guest: half of the book is whatnot to do, but -- what not to do, but of lot of things moving -- like move into the weekend boating, changes within congress itself, ways of altering the election system, making sure we have a system that operates better, and also changing the culture. host: mr. mann? guest: public square, public
shame, requiring the press to go along with institutional reforms -- a big part of the book is what to do about it, not just complaining. host: thomas mann, norman ornstein, co-authors of "it's even worse than it looks." thank you. we will look at a new analysis from club for growth looking at how congressman coming into office have voted. later on, we will discuss the influence of sun spots and phenomenon that could effect the electrical grid. timothy ferris from national geographic will be along for that later on. will have discussions after this update from c-span radio. >> a pakistani government official says a local doctor who helped the united states track down osama bin laden has been
convicted of high treason and sentenced to 33 years in prison. an official says he was accused the running to a fake vaccination program will be to let out the cia track bin laden in a town where he was killed last may. if secretary of state hillary clinton is calling for his release, saying his work is -- served pakistani and american interests. meanwhile, reports are the cia and the white house opened up to hollywood on the bin laden raid. film makers were told nbc would be made available. a transcript -- were told a navy seal would be made available. a transcript is available.
mark sullivan says his officers contact with prostitutes and a colombian hotel last month produced no breach of national security plans for president obama's visit, but susan collins, a republican senator from the state of maine says not only was it reckless and morally repugnant, it could provided criminals for opportunity -- opportunities for black male that could threaten the president's safety. -- opportunities for black mail that could have threatened the president's safety. >> i think this is one of those markets where people vote in -- do not vote for the party. the city of which a top votes for the candidate. he and the of this is heavily republican, midwest, which is
dynamic, and great, but i think you see more than in recent years. they're voting more for what the person stands for. >> in june 2 and third, booktv and american history tv explore wichita, kansas. >> this is the only remaining original structure from the 1865-1870 time. it was an important building in our history in that it was a residence and the headquarters of the wichita town in a land company that came down here to create the city of wichita. >> watched in june 2 and third on c-span 2 and c-span3. >> "washington journal" continues. host: chris chocola, club for
growth, talks about a new analysis for the house of representatives. what were you looking for? guest: we were looking for facts. we did a congressional vote study of republican freshmen, so-called tea party groups, and there was a narrative developed on how the freshmen are right- wing tea party extremists, so we thought we would look at the facts, i do they vote that way, or are they more like mainstream, long-term members of congress? we score every session of congress. we have done it for years. the tea party freshman, so to speak, had an average of 71% out of 100, and the veteran members have a score of 69%, so there was no discernible difference. we do not think it is accurate to call this a homogeneous group.
it's called the vote as a block? guest: do not vote as a bloc. host: that is one of the claims. guest: well, they do not. the narrative but we've seen from the media and the democrat said this is an extremist group that is out of step with the country is false. they do not vote differently from veteran members of congress. we wish they did. we wish they voted better. we wish they really did support limited government, like they campaigned on. i do not think they are living up to the tea party principles they espoused during their campaigns. so, we think facts matter. votes count. the service we provide members is doing both analysis of the time, and this is one example that we make available to the public because the more inform the public is the better
government we get. host: what went into judging the final scores? guest: we have 75,000 members united in the belief that pro- growth economic policy leads to prosperity for everyone. what we do is to score economic votes. when there are important economic votes coming to congress, we will put our an alert to every congressional office and say we will put this on our scorecard and published the results add things like the stimulus vote, obama-care, appropriations, cutting spending -- we score that. people can go on our web site and the study, look at each vote. host: as far as the top-ranking votes? in the -- votes, the
representatives from michigan, kansas, and idaho. they had 100% of the votes. all of them basically voted in lyons -- in the lines that your group supports next guest: they voted for economic freedom -- supports? guest: they voted for economic freedom. they believe that limiting government expands of the tories for everyone, and they broke that agenda, -- expands opportunities for everyone, and a bloated that agenda. host: some of the lowest scoring were out of florida, new york, john runyon of new jersey, and
the list goes down from there, to the lowest of 37% with david mckinley of west virginia. guest: the reason we have published this is as people campaign that they are cutting spending, they are not. it is a bipartisan problem. your guests were talking among gridlock in washington. is a bipartisan problem. both parties continue -- talking about gridlock in washington. is a bipartisan problem. we want something that does not limit our prospects for growth and prosperity. we want to highlight the votes and my people to what they what with the information. host: the head of the club for
growth chris chocola is here to talk about these issues. if you want to talk to him host: new castle, pa.. democrats line. ryan. caller: i think you are being disingenuous to say did they do not vote as a block. i would take a step further to say that all republicans would stand by any republican for whenever even if it keeps washington in gridlock and raises our debt to huge amounts. i believe it is a problem in both parties, but let's be honest. the republicans had a meeting before obama was put in office
to figure out how they could disregard anything he could do and block anything he was going to do. now, come on, that is getting ridiculous. to say they are not a block is ridiculous, especially with the tea party people. guest: it is not my opinion. it is a fact. if you look at the range of scores, you can see the tea party freshman are not tea party freshman because they are not voting together. if you have a range of scores from 37% to 100%, which means they're not voting the same way very often. we all have opinions, political views, but we thought we would just look at the facts and that is except what we did. they speak for themselves. democrats do not have a majority of government. so, if things are not getting done, i do not think it is the
responsibility of republicans alone, because they actually have a minority position, and even though they are a minority, they're not a homogeneous group. host: a question from twitter -- de believe the culture keeps them from voting their consciences, or are they hypocrites? guest: the culture has not changed. the culture needs to change. the questions i would ask is partisanship is nothing new. go back to the election of 1800, and they were calling each other hatchet-faced nutmeg dealers. this is nothing new. could anyone name a bipartisan bill that actually shrank the scope and size of government ever? if there is a caller that could point out -- maybe you could go back to welfare reform in the mid-1990's, but every bi- partisan bill has increased the
size and scope of government. that is the problem. bipartisanship is how fast do we grow government -- recess, or a little slower than really fast? -- really fast, or a little slower than really fast? the american people are trying to see -- said people that are trying to stop that. your last guest said republicans are out-of-touch with mainstream americans, but if they are, why are voters sending more of them to washington? guest: -- host: john, republican line. good morning. caller: you are embarrassing the republicans. this is not the republicans that are supporting. you would not support ronald reagan today if he was running for congress today. the reality is people vote for
you to do something good for the country, not to go against the other party. your principles are not important to me. the country comes first. that is what you as a politician do, what is good for the country, not just stand and attack. guest: again, we try to focus on the facts. i agree that elected officials should do what is good for the country. i would ask how good is our country doing. our debt keeps going up. you can compensate. we think that policy matters, who serves matters.
if you want better policies, we have to elect better people. we are pro-economic growth. our job is to promote pro-growth policies. people that will vote a pro- growth agenda that will -- if they serve in congress. new jersey. john, independent line. caller: the tea party is an extreme of the american -- it is time for an independent candidate to step up and to get rid of this two-party system. the democrats and republicans have been given their chances to
make our country better. you have both failed. it is time for an independent person to step up to the plate and for the american people to support that independent candidate. i thank you so much for letting me speak, c-span. thank you for your time. host: the role of the independents? guest: it is up to the voters whether or not they want to support the independents. we are not the tea party group. i am not here to defend the tea party. we are aligned with the tea party, generally, on economic issues. it is a bit of a fallacy to say they are extreme. they are regular folks trying to understand how to participate in government. they are starting to have -- the last few elections cycles, they are having a real impact. they are finding candidates they want to support and getting them elected. citizens care about the
government and the future of the country. they want to participate in the political process. host: kansas city, missouri. william. hi? you are on, sir. go ahead. caller: [unintelligible] host: you are on, sir. go ahead. turn down your television. we are getting feedback. caller, go ahead. caller: i turned it down. why did these people make a pledge not to raise taxes whether any circumstance?
why would they do this? host: the idea of nicki a pledge not to raise taxes -- of making a pledge not to raise taxes. guest: we generally support the pledge from the standpoint that taxes are not a problem. you can confiscate the net worth of every single american cannot solve the financial obligations and promises we have made. if it is -- was as simple as that, the problem would have been solved. the problem are the unfunded liabilities, medicare, medicaid, social security, and pensions, even more so than our short-term deficit and long-term debt. you need to reform the entitlement system. you need to limit the size and scope of government. you need to cut the growth in spending, if not the spending
itself. th.focus on mas if politicians can get beyond the rhetoric and get to the math, they try to do the right thing. so far, we have not seen evidence that either party is willing to take the risk of leadership. hopefully, not a change, but it is up to the voters -- hopefully, that will change, but it is up to the voters. host: on our on our republican line. caller: i am curious as to how you rate my representative in your standings there. also, i would like to know what your opinion of my idea with domestic spending -- if we're going to send out all of those
unemployment checks to all of those people, all of those welfare checks and everything, why doesn't the government start demanding that they produce a product? like work in -- install mr. obama's rail system that he claimed he wanted to make available to 80% of the nation. guest: i think you are in the first district of michigan. he got a 72% on the score. you can go to the website, clubforgrowth.org, and look at the full report. the policy is up to the lawmakers. we are not a think tank. we support free-market policy. welfare reform is one of the most successful entitlement reforms -- social-reform programs in our nation's history. we have got back from that to
some extent. -- we have cut back from that to some extent. host: on our program last week, we had sean duffy of wisconsin. your group rated him a 58%. he was asked about the rating and what he thought about it. [video clip] >> i do not represent the club for growth. they have chosen to score votes i do not agree with. i was a lumberjack. i did lumberjack sports, chopping, logrolling, sawing. they said i didn't take a big enough axe to washington. some people say it is too big, some say not big enough. i will defend my votes.
i think it was the right way to go. you have the club for growth and a lot of people, but they are not in central wisconsin. i do not care what they say. host: chris chocola? guest: every congressman, congressman duffy is no exception, astana vote the way they feel they should -- has to vote the way they feel they should. i am not saying that progress is not taking a big enough axe -- saying that congress is not taking a big enough axe. our entitlement reforms and spending are out of control. something has to happen. we are reporting to the congressman's constituents how we vote he voted. they will have to decide whether or not that represents central
wisconsin. you for taking my call. i am not sure if you're connected to the tea party. i do not understand why they would contrast john boehner or's deal to -- would trash john deal.r's it trashed our credit rating as a nation. austerity is not working in the u.k. it you keep repeating that we do not have enough money to pay for all of these social programs. we are not paying for them all at once. that is another thing. we're not going to pay for them all at once. austerity is not working in europe. the germans are thinking of totally bailing out greece, not only bailing them out, but
flushing their economy with even more money. i am not getting why the tea party's is working -- or the tea party is working against us -- i am not getting more the tea party is working against us -- i am not getting why the tea party is working against us. guest: there is no proof that the tea party track star credit rating. -- tea party trashed our credit rating. we will hit the debt limit again. spending more and saying we will do the hard work later does not seem to work carry well. i am not sure what congress has done in a generation to give us confidence that the hard work they are not willing to do today they will do tomorrow. everything will be ok.
we will be able to live up to our obligations. the reason the credit rating was lowered was because congress did not instilled confidence in the credit markets that they would do the right thing, the hard thing to -- did not instill confidence in the credit markets that they would do the right thing, the hard thing. that is why the credit rating is lowered. it was because congress did not address the concerns the market had. host: this is from twitter. president obama offer speaker boehner cuts to social security and medicaid -- guest: i do not know the inside story. all i know is what has been reported. speaker boehner apparently thought he had a deal. he went back to the white house. the deal was pulled out from under him. he did not even have a chance to go back to his congress and describe what the deal was before the obama administration
changed the terms. i do not have inside information. no matter who you ask, you get an opinion. a lot of those opinions will be wrong. line.on the democrats' caller: the reason it is this honorable to play with the debt ceiling is because that is money we have -- it is this honorable -- dishonorable to play with the debt ceiling is because that is money we have already spent. then you have to decide whether to pay it back. the 14th amendment, article 4, you are making political. 70 years, we have passed this debt ceiling with all of this -- without all of this drama. it makes us look ridiculous. i was happy to hear you say that facts matter. i hope you look at this chart.
it is the marketwatch.com. it shows president obama has spent less money than the last five presidents. president obama has spent $1.40 trillion. bush ii -- $8.1 trillion. we need the facts. host: what do you respond? guest: i would like to see the chart. that is not the facts as i am aware of them. you hit the nail on the head. the last 70 years, we spent too much money. that's why we have to continue to increase the debt. if we do not raise the debt ceiling, we will default. the united states has zero chance of default. it will have to prioritize spending, but we will pay our financial obligations to our creditors. it is about the debt service.
the government can certainly do that. it will take more than 5% or 6% to cover the interest. what it does is, it forces congress to face up to the problems we have created over the last 70 years. we say we will borrow more and spend more. that cannot go on forever. at some couple, it will crash. we are not spending our money -- at some point, it will crash. we are spending not our money, but our children's money. they will pay for it with higher taxes and a lower standard of living. we're living it up because we do not want to take the responsibility and make the hard decisions. host: how do you respond to the report looking at a recession in 2013 depending on the decisions made this year in regard to tax cuts? guest: they will either be -- there will either be massive
gridlock, as we have already discussed this morning -- if the democrats win everything, they will probably let the tax rights expire. there will be more spending, more taxes. the republicans will say, let's come back next year and fix things. when there is uncertainty, economic growth so first. economic growth suffer s. the question i asked people that is important to keynesian-style spending, show me an example where it has worked to grow an economy. i heard paul krugman answer this. the answer is never. we have never spent enough.
we have always lost our nerve. japan lost their nerve. we lost our nerve under fdr. we are losing our nerve now. it is a neat point to make. at what point do you decide you have spent enough and it does not work? we should avoid a recession. who knows righ tnow. -- right now. host: from tacoma, washington. caller: thank you. i would like to make a couple of quick points, they are sort of philosophical. i totally support the tea party. it is the best thing that has happened in my life. the tea party came when a blue dog democrat was painted as a conservative. the nation started to spin out control. a philosophical point, back in history, the republican party was founded as a split from the
waist. the whig party was very rhino. they would not push the issues. would you agree the parallel between the tea party is a split from the republican party? on "washington journal," you hear the words "para chair" constantly. it is an oxymoron. -- you hear the words "fair share" constantly. it is an oxymoron. so, i am saying the whole concept of "fair share" doesn't work. thank you, c-span. host: the tea party is a split from the republican party? guest: i am not sure that it is. just last night in kentucky, you saw a tea party candidate to win the republican primary.
i do not expect to see a third party emerges out of the tea party, no. host: new york. this is carl on our independent line. caller: i really enjoyed some of the observations. the last speaker had some good philosophical points. my observation is, when you are running a government, it should be no different than when you are running a big business. it should be run in a business- like fashion. what astounds me, the senate, a democratic senate, has not come up with a budget in four years. that is in violation of the law. the reason why you have a budget is -- it shows your priorities. it shows you where your philosophies are, where you want to spend money. then you can start talking about input. has nott obama's budget passed its own senate.
they are playing like children. isresentative brian's but it dead on arrival whenever democrats -- representative ryan's budget is dead on arrival whenever democrats speak about it. at least, it could be a starting point. guest: that is right. it does not get nearly enough attention to the democrats are the majority party in the senate. they have a constitutional responsibility. it does such a priority. it is not actually the law. the republicans of the house, in the last two years, have a budgets. we support congressman ryan's budgets. we think they do not cut spending enough or live up to the amendments made in the budget control act in the shorter-term, which we think they should do.
we have been critical of that. congress is not functioning to its constitutional obligations to set the party of spending. somehow, they have not -- there has not been much impressed paid to the senate -- some are, there has not been much of a price paid by the senate democrats. caller: good morning. he is with the club for growth. my thing is, you are on about spending. there is spending in other countries and spending in the domestic area. you cannot say that these so- called programs are the bulk of this debt. look at how much we're spending in afghanistan and iraq right now, versus what we spend on
social programs. social programs help people in this country, not other countries. be right about it. if you want to control spending, control all of it, not just part of it. people talk about only the social programs are the problem. no. we spend mothers and the other countries and build other nations. that it -- we spend money in other countries and build other nations. that is the problem. guest: we try to look at more responsible spending in everything, including defense. we do not oppose the defense cuts that were in the sequester. we think the driver is the entitlement system. medicare,curity, sai medicaid, and pensions. depending on the numbers you want to use, we had maybe $78
trillion of unfunded obligations that we have no idea how we will pay. congress and the president have a responsibility to put ideas on the table to reform these programs so they are sustainable in the long term. so they will be there for the people that need them. that is really the irony here. people that are criticized because they want to change medicare as we know it -- what we know about medicare is that is going to go broke. we must change it in order for it to be sustainable and for it to be here for the people who need it in the future. we need more people who will take responsibility and take additional leadership and articulate the reason we need reform. because it is the right thing to do. host: chris chocola of club for growth. if you want to look more at the study, go to clubforgrowth.org. we turn our attention to the sun
and what it might do to power grids and things of that nature. that is coming back to this update from c-span radio. >> russia fired -- russia test fired a missile. they have an interim ballistic missile defense capability in europe. in remarks earlier, they said, ntinentalinterconne capability is meant to strengthen the abilities of their anti-missile defenses." iran is looking for certain concessions as it meets today with negotiators for the united states and five other world powers on the country's nuclear program. no breakthrough is expected in the talks going on in baghdad. iran is pushing for a specific timetable and goals. western leaders are signaling
they want more disclosures about iran's nuclear program before offering any rewards. the united states senate voted unanimously earlier this week to increase sanctions on iran for their suspected nuclear-weapons program. the leaders of the 27 countries that make up the european union meet in brussels today on the debt crisis in europe, one day after the organization for economic cooperation and development warned that the 17 countries that use the rope or risk falling into, in their words, -- that use the euro risk falling into combat in their words, ahead of the opening bell, the dow futures are down 63 points. those are the latest headlines on c-span radio. >> congressman, they did something dumb, they did not
collapse. fire the people who whcaused it. why does the government need to play a role? >> to some extent, that is true. i take some credit for it. governments to play a role. a j.p. morgan had lost what appears to be more than $2 billion. you would have seen more panic in the economy. he would have seen more concerned. what we did in the legislation narrowcast and through other things was to acquire the -- in the legislation that we passed and through other things -- the government tells them they need more capital. that helps give people reassurance. >> on "newsmakers," congressman barney frank spoke about the loss by j.p. morgan chase, as well as the state of the u.s. and world economies, the dog- franc loss, and gay marriage -- the dodd-frank law, and gay marriage.
>> "washington journal" continues. host: it is our regular weekly magazine spotlight. we are looking at solar storms. joining us is timothy ferris. he serves as a contributor for "national geographic." he is joining us from san francisco. good morning. what we know about the sun and how it affects things on earth when it comes to microsystems, things that are very -- comes to vital systems and things are very critical? guest: 99% of the mass of the solar system is in the sun. it is a slightly larger than average star with a diameter of 110 earths wide and 330,000 earth masses.
it affects the magnetic environment of the earth. the sun goes through a number of cycles, starting with the basic 11-year sunspot cycle. when it reaches the masxim of oe of these cycles, which is what we're approaching coming you get more activity, more -- what we're approaching now, you get more activity, more solar storms. they can affect electronic devices. host: give us some examples of what things might be affected by the solar storms. guest: one is the power grid. one way to think about this is,
mildly variable.olen they can produce players with a lot of energy that comes flying out -- produce flares with a lot of energy that comes flying out. nobody knows what the upper limit is on that energy. in 1859, an amateur astronomer was observing the sun from his private observatory in the morning. he actually witnessed the most powerful solar flare in history. that energy lit up the most advanced network of that day, which was the telegraph network around the world. the telegraph lines absorbed so much energy from the solar flare that the operators discovered that they could disconnect the
batteries and send and receive messages solely from the ambient charge in these networks. no event anywhere near that parcel has occurred since then. it is a bit -- no event anywhere near that powerful as occurred since then. you could take down an entire park ridge. power grids rely on transformers. -- you could take down an entire power grid. power grids rely on transformers. you could have power outages that might last weeks or months for large numbers of people. that is the sort of thing that engineers look at. it is difficult to design and build for a maximum solar even to. nobody knows what the effects of such a flare might be on the earth.
host: our guest is timothy ferris of "national geographic." if you would ask questions and you can give him a call. 202-737-0002 for democrats. 202-737-00014 republicans. you can send us an e-mail at email@example.com. what about communications systems? guest: we are highly reliant on satellite communications systems. big solar storms impact satellites in a number of ways. one way is they can fry the electronics on satellites. modern satellites are well hardened and designed to resist that sort of thing. it is a possibility in a big storm that you could use some communications -- lose some communications satellites. increases in the solar winds,
all of the particles thrown off the surface of the sun in a big storm, they can degrade the orbits of satellites. that is a concern for operators. the international space station loses altitude everyday going to the normal flux of solar wind -- altitude every day, owing to the normal flux of the solar wind. the world has become so much more electronic event since 1859. -- the world has become so much 1859.electronic since 198 national geographic -- "national geographic" wanted to
draw attention that we have a natural system that we are dependent on. there is no theoretical upper limit on the variability. we want to be prepared for the prospect that -- the prospect of massive power failures or sudden losses of communication. in 1989, there was a solar storm that knocked down the power grid in quebec for some hours. the northeastern part of the united states into canada is a kind of shield, a geological shield. there is a lot of metallic rock just under the surface for dozens of square miles -- for thousands of square miles. it caused some problems. in aarth's weather is
state of interaction with our home star, as you might expect. it is of scientific interest, but also of concern for technological standpoint. host: this is sam from georgia. caller: good morning. i was wondering if a protector or timeframe -- if there would be a predictor door or timeframe, if the power companies would no previous to know happening -- would previous to this happening. guest: a lot of effort has been put into a better understanding the behavior of the sun. there are a lot of national satellites that monitor the sun in three dimensions from different locations, not in earth orbit, but often in orbit around the sun itself. the in no way a operations on the earth -- the know a bank --
the noaa operations on the earth to try to understand the space weather. the reason for these investments has been to try to improve the ability of scientists to make predictions, as your question implied. there has been a terrific improvement in the ability of scientists to understand one's eupepsia solar eruption -- to understand, once you see a similar direction, what is going to happen. -- once you see a solar eruption, what is going to happen. the level of predictability has become pretty good. it has become possible for the scientists to emerge the prediction -- to predict the emergence of a solar storm
because they can see ripples on the surface of the sun that indicates the activity below. that is an improvement. beyond that, the behavior of the sun is not yet predictable. so, what scientists are missing today is the ability to know days or weeks in advance. host: we are showing some images from the "national geographic" piece. jim asking on twitter -- do we know more about the sun or more about the human brain? guest: the sun is a relatively simple system. all stars work by nuclear fusion. that system is well understood. the core is surrounded by a massive amount of primarily hydrogen or helium. it is so dense that when you generate a photon of light at the core, it takes about 100,000
years to get to the surface and then appear as sunlight. if the summer to magically shutdown tamara, it would be 100,000 years -- if the sun were to magically shutdown tomorrow, it would be 100,000 years before the light went out. but it is a fascinating fact of our astronomy that something as simple as a star is so complicated and subtle in its behavior, and so fascinating to study. host: two questions from e-mail. guest: i think the answer to the second question is no.
it would take -- that is for an excursion. it would require quite an amazing storm to actually impact inside a nuclear reactor. one could always take precautions to deal with that. the first question is a very interesting one. if you shut off the power grid, would it help? i am not an engineer in this field. my guess is no. the solar storm itself, that charged particles impacting theh's natmagnetosphere, upper atmosphere, will charge and the grid any way -- will charge the grid anyway. it might be the same issue. it would be an interesting question for power grid operators. what they might tell you is that you would make -- it would make sense to try to disconnect parts
of the grid so that if you had a problem in one part, it would not spread to other parts. in the quebec event, decades ago, it was fairly limited in its scope. it did not tear down the entire eastern power grid. host: one of the pictures from "national geographic." we are going to take a call for timothy ferris from richmond, va. colin >> this is one of my favorite subjects that you have here -- caller: this is one of my favorite subjects that you have here. i think it was cycle 22 that was going on. we had a skip. you could talk across the city. you could talk all the way to california and places like that. the police were out there with
their radios, talking to another unit across town. next thing you know, they were talking to some guy in seattle, washington. they were not supposed to do that and have to idle conversation. what would be the effect on people that might not understand? this is a wide band of frequencies. what would be the effect on cell phones and other radio communications? i think that would be the biggest problem. these lines would be energized, but the frequency of the radiation could be so wide -- host: thank you. guest: it is an interesting point. i know what you mean. when i was a boy, we had people of solar activity that altered the height of the ionosphere,
which is where the radio signals bounced off of. the ionosphere is estimated by sunlight during the day and bennett reforms itself -- and then get reforms itself -- and then it reforms itself on the night side of the planet. we were picking up taxi drivers talking on the other side of the atlantic ocean. it is interesting. the honest. does it change to lot -- the ionosphere does get changed a lot by solar activity. cell phones are well constructed. the link to the local towers is probably ok. it is more likely that the land mines might light up a bit and lines some -- the land mine
might light up a bit and cause some trouble. the calculations of the impact are largely in the theoretical realm. it is interesting to realize the earth is not a self-contained unit. it is everything, including our weather and all these other patterns, our climate, involved with interactions with this star 93 million miles away, the only star that astronomers can study in such close detail. host: toledo, ohio. caller: hi, mr. ferris. thank you for being on. it is a wonderful program. i have a curiosity question. we had an annual solar eclipse recently. i was wondering if any event
like that could potentially be a seal from a solar flare. are they connected at all? it seems like we are approaching solar-flare seasons and we are having these lunar events, too. i was wondering if that is taken into consideration -- for defect the moon has in protecting -- what effect the moon has in protecting us? guest: the moon does cast a shadow. everyone who sees that -- who is in the shadow sees it as an eclipse. when you get a flare coming to earth, even if the moon were in the middle of that, it is like a rock or pebble in the middle of a stream. the particle wave would come
right around the moon. the moon would not act as much of a shield from the effects of a solar storm. host: massachusetts. good morning >> independent line -- good morning, independent line. caller: i have read articles that say that the magnetic field of the earth is changing, poles are switching. it will come to a neutral point at some time. if that occurs and we have a massive solar flare, what do you think the outcome would be? guest: i suppose it would reduce the protection that you referred to, tho. the earth's magnetic field does offer a lot of protection. typically, the high-energy power occurs -- the high-energy
particles washed around the earth. a lot folks in more northern latitudes in hemisphere and southern latitudes in the southern hemisphere -- a lot of folks in the more northern latitudes in the northern hemisphere and southern latitudes in the southern hemisphere have seen these. the energy is channeled through the atmosphere and it releases the energy as the light of the aurora. if you took that away, and i suppose it would reduce the protection -- the earth's and bennett field -- the earth's magnetic field takes a long time to go through a reversal process. we do not have any experience of what would be like during the
centuries to thousands of years that the poles were switching. it is not a short-term issue. host: this is off of twitter. guest: it is not difficult to predict the effects of a particular flaire. the observation of the sun coming using technology that is greatly improved -- the observation of the sun, using technology that is greatly improved lately -- all of this field of research indicates there is no known upper limit on what the strength of a flair could be on a star =-- the strength of a flare could be on
a star, including the sun. is it going to be something like what we have seen in the recent decades? will it be something like the event from the 19th century? the effects might be rather more difficult. host: another tweet this morning. guest: yeah, temporarily. a big solar flare can destroy the van allen belts, the radiation belts surrounding the earth. they reconstitute themselves. it can decimate the earth's magnetic field so that you get -- the shielding effect is significantly reduced. it sounds like science fiction, but there is some parallel. a big storm best disrupt the earth's environment -- a big
storm does disrupt the earth's environment. our electronic technology is so young. it has existed only for a small fraction of the sun's 4.5 billion years. host: from new jersey, tom. caller: good morning and thank you for c-span. i think he missed the main problem with the solar flares. do you agree that nuclear power plants have to be cooled 247 -- 24/7? guest: yes. caller: do you further agreed that the power to run the cooling pumps comes from the grid and not the plants themselves? guest: plants also have backup generators. caller: they run for about a
week. if the grid goes down and the cooling systems go down, they will have -- they will begin melting down like fukushima. concern?t a realistic guest: i do not think so. all nuclear plants are designed with the possibility that you could lose electrical power. that is not an imponderable for nuclear-plan design. i have not seen any scenario where meltdowns of nuclear p lants are listed in the event of a solar flare. caller: i have a couple of quick questions. the sun isieve in th growing? what temperature will the earth
increased to -- increase to? guest: that is several questions. global warming is hunot an issue for belief or disbelief. the science is clear. we have two centuries of scientific research that support the case that humans created greenhouse gases that are contributed to the warming of the planet. there is the danger of the runaway greenhouse effect. as the earth warms, the release much more potent greenhouse gases, such as methane -- hugh release -- you release much more
potent greenhouse gases, such as methane. he reached a couple where the investment necessary to reverse the process -- you reach the pole paul laird the investment necessary to reverse the process -- that is from research conducted all over the world by tens of thousands of scientists. i am sorry this issue has become politicized. as an observer of science, it is simple. we have been looking at global warming in regards to the atmosphere in places like venus and mars for a long time. there is nothing controversial about it. it is an issue that should be determined on facts, not a leaf. it is the son growing, no -- not on belief. it is the son -- and is the sun growing?
no. the mass of a star slowly decreases. no, the sun is not growing. host: norfolk, nebraska. steve, republican line. caller: thank you for c-span. is there any correlation between the sun's activity and some of the winds we are having? it's seems like in northeast nebraska, we are having an increase of 40 to 45-mile-an- hour sustained winds for days. and the frequency of them is unlike anything i hvae -- have seen. we have had wind storms. but the frequency of them this
spring, if there is any correlation there. guest: several good questions. let me address them. the sun's output in terms of heat is pretty stable. the amount of variability is quite small. you would not expect the sun's output to have much of an effect on whether -- weather. anecdotally, my own impression is that we are having much more extreme weather now. it should be noted that this is a prediction of global warming, that the weather dynamics will become more energized. that said, we have to be careful not to use anecdotes to make general cases. i am from florida originally. our big wind there is hurricane. hurricanes have been getting more numerous and energetic. you have to look at the
historical record. it is difficult to make a historical connection between a particular weather pattern and global warming. but that is a prediction of the scientific work. i would make a personal prediction that it appears to me we are entering an era of much more dynamic and energetic weather, and that the driver of this is a global warming. host: does the temperature of the sun state consistent? guest: it is pretty consistent. all stars are variable. it is a rather beautiful mechanism. if you have a nuclear furnace at the core, and there is this material being held together by the enormous gravity of the center of the star, when the gravity pushes the material -- its squeezes a little tighter, the reaction rate goes up. that heats the court. the heat causes the court to expand -- that he is the core --
that heats the core. the heat causes the core to expand. stars are being extremely noisy. there is a tremendous amount of acoustic energy. by using helioseismology, you can reconstruct the -- reconstruct what was goign on in -- going on inside. the sun is quite stable. astronomers call it the solar constant. we are now close to 2000
candidates. one of the interesting questions as the search goes on for the possibility of life on other planets will be, do you only find life on planet that orbit very stable stars like the sun, or are there more wildly variable stars with planets as well? host: bob, go ahead. firstname.lastname@example.org caller caller: could use begun how the sun was -- could you speak on the physical dimensions of the sun? can you relate it in our terms, like 100 diameters of the earth, that sort of thing? guest: the sun has a diameter
of 110 earths. it used to be that only astronomers could see this with very fancy and expensive telescopes, with marvelous solar processes. the magnetic field lines -- the sun is made of plasma. that is what you get when you strip adams down to their constitutional -- strip atoms down to their constitutional elements, protons, neutrons. it is 330,000 times the mass of the earth. you can now get the solar telescopes for the cost of a decent camera and look for yourself. you will see a solar prominence
rising and falling back to the sun. the scale is almost in a comprehensible. the arch is much larger than the -- the scale is almost in comprehensible. the arch is much larger than the earth. it is moving fast. you get scale -- if you ever took a magnet and put a piece of paper and shake the iron filings on it, you can see the magnetic field lines. those are, what, a millimeter in width. on the sun, those are wider than the earth. you have these tubs that --
tubes that loop over and drop back. that is looking down on one of these giant, magnetic storms -- the giant magnetic storms. even though i have been observing the sun for half a century, i still find it difficult to adjust to the scale in which -- what amounts to a single electrical wire is twice the diameter of the earth. host: chad, independent line. go ahead. you're on. caller: hello. long let's move on to island, new york. caller: hello. thank you, c-span. i would like to ask your guest the question. i do not know if he would have
the knowledge of this. the solar panels are going up all-around. -- all around. there was some controversy about cadmium being involved in the making of the solar panels. do you know anything about that as far as would there be any kind of repercussions from using that particular solar panel? guest: you know, i'm sorry, i don't. cadmium, i guess, is the material in question. that is a new one to me. host: a twitter question. guest: pretty much so. one big difference is that the sun, being much more massive and rotating much more rapidly
relative to its size than the earth does, and also rotating deferentially because it does not have a solid surface, it twists its magnetic field lines. at complicates things allot -- that complicates things a lot. the charged particles are following magnetic field lines that snake out like a garden hose -- hose. when astronomers map these, they have to take into account that it does not come off of the sun straight, but in a spiral pattern. it is an interesting question. the sun's magnetic field, in addition to being more par, is more complex than is the magnetic field -- being more powerful, is more complex than the magnetic field of the earth. the magnetic field of the earth. host: